AFLW – The Doc’s State League Round Up


This weekend kicked off the VFLW season, and with many AFLW players taking to the field this weekend here in Victoria, it got me thinking about whether I could pen a piece featuring all the AFLW players that do take the field, given that we are still just over five months away from the AFLW season kicking off.

I do have something of a season preview in the works, but I can’t guarantee it’ll be six million words per team like Chief Mongrel does for the men’s sides.

But in the meantime, I’ll give this a go. The state leagues in Western Australia and South Australia have already begun, and state leagues in Queensland and New South Wales will start in the next fortnight.

So, with all that said, let’s have a look at who in the AFLW player around the state leagues this weekend:

*Western Bulldogs and North Melbourne played in the VFLW, but no one on the AFLW list played for either side.



Brooke Boileau and Jess Waterhouse were featured in South Adelaide’s win over Woodville-West Torrens.

Boileau, the Crows’ first selection at 22 in last year’s AFLW draft, starred with 22 disposals, kicked a goal and had six clearances in an awe-inspiring display offensively. She also applied tremendous defensive pressure with seven tackles.

Waterhouse once again showed presence inside the forward 50, kicking two goals in the first term. She also laid five tackles, and more impressively, she had picked up 19 touches.

Another Crows draftee, Lily Tarlinton, was featured for the Eagles in this game but only featured for just nine hitouts and two touches as she played back-up ruck to ex-AFLW player Leah Cutting.

Keeley Kusterman had a busy day in the office at West Adelaide, picking up 14 disposals, six tackles, three inside 50s and four clearances in a narrow defeat to Glenelg.

Najwa Allen was prolific in the defensive half for Norwood in their 25-point win over North Adelaide. In a stellar effort, Allen picked up 19 disposals, four marks, four tackles, and six rebound 50s.



Making her return after missing the entire 2023 AFLW season due to injury, Maddy Guerin had a significant say in the Blues’ 31-point victory over Geelong in their VFLW season opener at GMHBA Stadium.

Guerin was the Blues’ equal leader for clearances with six, but he also picked up 18 disposals and three marks and, thankfully, got through the game unscathed.

The other player that topped the clearance count for the Blues was Keeley Sherar, who picked up from where she left off last season in the AFLW; she also led the Blues for disposals with 24 for the match, as well as picking up seven tackles and kicked a goal.

Brooke Vickers was also prolific, picking up 19 disposals and a goal and was named among the Blues’ best players. Another Blue featured in Carlton’s best was supplemental draftee Lulu Beatty; she picked 18 disposals and six marks and rebounded nicely from the defence.

Draftees Lila Keck and Meg Robertson made their first appearances in navy blue for the year, and both were solid contributors all around—Keck, with 11 touches, five marks, and five tackles, showed presence forward of centre. In contrast, Robertson (14 disposals and four marks) showed her wares across the ground.

Mia Austin (1.1 from nine touches, four tackles and four marks), Ciara Fitzgerald (14 disposals, three tackles), and Keeley Skepper (1.1 from 10 disposals) also featured in the Blues’ win.



Draftees Lucy Cronin and Amber Schutte were featured in Collingwood’s eight-point loss to the Southern Saints.

It was a quietish first hitout for Cronin, who the Pies took with pick nine in last year’s AFLW draft, registering just six kicks from eight disposals and putting up three tackles. It was a slightly better return from Schutte, primarily off half-back, picking up 14 disposals and two rebound 50s.

Charlotte Taylor was also featured in this game and picked up 11 touches and three tackles.



Draftee Chloe Adams marked her first game in Bombers colours with a solid performance in Essendon’s 47-point loss to Port Melbourne.

Adams, taken with the Bombers’ second pick in the draft, coming at 38, picked up 20 disposals and five clearances, combining well in the contest with VFL-listed player Ruby Mahony.

Two other Bombers’ players featured in the loss—Lily-Rose Williamson had eight touches and one behind in her first game after suffering an ankle injury during pre-season last year, which derailed her season, while Ash Van Loon (14 disposals) was in the top five for the club for disposals.



Key Forward Serena Gibbs kicked two goals for East Fremantle in their thrilling one-point win over Swan Districts. She only had four touches of the ball, but you can’t ask for much more when half of those touches result in a goal.

Megan Kauffman had a best-on-ground performance for West Perth in a smashing over South Fremantle. Kauffman notched a team-high 25 disposals, five tackles, six marks and kicked two goals in a performance that suggests she’ll be one to look out for in 2024.

South Fremantle had solid performances from Ariana Hetherington (18 disposals, six marks), Tahleah Mulder (19 disposals, four marks and three tackles), and draftee Holly Ifould (12 disposals).

Joanne Cregg kicked a goal for Subiaco in a 67-point win over Peel Thunder. Cregg also managed 15 touches and five inside 50s, which was a good performance.


Geelong’s 31-point loss to Carlton had one massive positive: Abbey McDonald’s game in the midfield. She dominated the contest, picking up 35 disposals and 12 clearances, and was probably one of the few standouts from an AFLW perspective.

Gabbi Featherston (11 disposals, five tackles and two marks) had a fair impact, particularly in the early part of the contest. In comparison, Melissa Bragg (15 disposals) was highlighted with her drive out of the defensive 50.

First-round draftee Chantal Mason started life as a Cat with a goal to her name from only six touches.



The Hawks fielded 10 AFLW-listed players and smashed Casey by 108 points at Casey Fields on the weekend.

The Hawks had a centre-bounce set-up of Lucy Wales, Emily Bates, Eliza West, and Jasmine Fleming, all of whom tore the Demons to shreds as the game continued. Wales had 16 hitouts but also 15 disposals and five clearances.

Fleming was arguably the best in this game, putting up 39 disposals and seven clearances. Bates put up 30 disposals but came through with six clearances and seven tackles in a more well-rounded game. West had 26 disposals, nine tackles, five clearances, and a goal in her first game in Hawks colours since crossing from Melbourne last year.

Another former Dee, Casey Sherriff, made her brown and gold debut at the state level, scoring 11 disposals, four marks, and kicking a goal.

Aine McDonagh kicked two goals from just seven touches. Still, the result could’ve been far more significant if it wasn’t for the inaccuracy of Kristy Stratton (2.3 from 18 disposals and six marks) and Bridie Hipwell (1.3 from 11 disposals).

Jenna Richardson has been a solid contributor across the back half for the Hawks since coming into the competition, and again held fort in defence for Box Hill (14 disposals and five marks), while Tamara Smith (16 disposals) featured in Box Hill’s best.



Former Port Adelaide player Lily Johnson debuted in the red and blue for Casey in their 108-point loss to Box Hill. She only had nine touches, but six were rebound 50s, highlighting that she may play backline for Melbourne this year.

Father-daughter draft selection Jemma Rigoni also played for Casey and put in a solid return of 12 disposals, two marks, and two rebound 50s.



Port Adelaide pre-list signing Shineah Goody saw plenty of the ball in the Eagles’ loss to Woodville-West Torrens. She picked up 22 disposals, took a strong contested grab and featured with four clearances. Defensively, she was also busy with seven tackles in a starring role.  

Julia Teakle kicked two goals for Central Districts in a 30-point loss to Sturt. She also took three marks, one of which was contested, and four tackles. Olivia Levicki had a strong performance in the ruck for the Bulldogs, with 28 hitouts, but she also got her hands to the ball a fair bit, picking up 13 disposals and two clearances.

Lauren Young will be a player to watch this year in the AFLW, given how good she has been in the SANFLW over the years as a teenager, but this week was a bit of a quieter game for the young prodigy; she only had 11 touches and two tackles for West Adelaide’s narrow defeat to Glenelg.

At the other end, Port’s prized draftee from this past off-season, Piper Window, showed what she could do against senior bodies, kicking 1.2 from 24 disposals for the Tigers. She also picked up seven marks and five clearances in a monster display in Glenelg’s midfield.

Ella Boag also showed plenty to like for the Tigers on the outside, picking up 20 disposals and five tackles.

Key defender Amelie Borg found a fair bit of the footy for North Adelaide in their loss to Norwood, picking up seven marks and 16 disposals, but also recorded five tackles. Teammate Katelyn Pope was also busy in the coalface, picking up 18 disposals, three marks, three tackles and three clearances.

For Norwood, Sachi Syme (13 disposals, four clearances and five tackles) and Port pre-list signing Molly Brooksby (15 disposals) featured strongly in their over the Roosters.



Richmond draftees Isabel Bacon and Mackenzie Ford featured in Port Melbourne’s big win over Essendon in their VFLW season opener.

They weren’t the stars of the show, but both showed they’ve got a great appetite for the contest. Bacon, in particular, showed good footy IQ in various parts of the game (12 disposals, four marks, two tackles). While Ford didn’t see much of the ball, five tackles against more senior bodies is a good plus.

The star of the Richmond AFLW lot was Katelyn Cox, one of four Port Melbourne players who kicked two goals. She also had 12 disposals and seven tackles, playing more as a pressure forward in this game.

There was also a lot to like from former top-five draft pick Stella Reid, who played a bit more midfield than forward and delivered a good performance – 16 disposals, four tackles, three marks and three clearances in a reasonable effort.



A handful of AFLW-listed Saints appeared for the Southern Saints in their eight-point win against Collingwood.

Former top-five draft pick Ella Friend was an enjoyable read out of the game, putting up 13 disposals, 12 kicks and seven rebound 50s as a defensive-half type. She also picked up three clearances and three tackles in this game.

Veteran Nat Plane kicked a goal from 11 disposals and also recorded five tackles in a pressure forward role, while Darcy Guttridge had a quieter outing, managing only eight touches and a couple of marks.

Caitlin Matthews has not made an AFLW appearance since being drafted in 2022 but showed promising signs of rebounding the ball out of the defensive half.



Code-hopper Verity Simmons hit the scoresheet for Subiaco in their smashing over Peel Thunder, kicking a goal from 12 disposals and two marks.

Number two draft pick from last year, Jess Rentsch, was named one of East Perth’s best players in their loss to Claremont. She picked up 11 disposals, three marks, and three tackles.

For Claremont, Emily Elkington was a presence up forward, picking up eight tackles and 12 disposals, but she let herself down in front of goals, picking up two behinds.


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